Poe suggests business coaches for MRT3: 'Think out of the box'
MANILA, Philippines – How about business coaches for the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT3)?
At the Senate hearing for the proposed budget of the Department of Transportation (DOTr), Senator Grace Poe brought up a suggestion from a "concerned citizen" that will hopefully convince more people to ride trains instead of private cars.
"Meron isang nagsabi sa 'kin, ewan ko if this is something you would consider, but again we're trying to think out of the box. Habang ginagawa na nga ninyo 'yung Dalian trains, baka daw may a few specific coaches or trains that are designated as a business coach," Poe said.
(Someone told me, I don't know if this is something you would consider, but again we're trying to think out of the box. While you're working on the Dalian trains, maybe you could also designate specific coaches or trains as a business coach.)
Right after floating the idea, Poe asked the panel to hear her out, saying that passengers can be charged for up to P300 for guaranteed space in the coach.
Why would this be a viable strategy? Poe said it's because people who can afford to pay this amount are the ones that drive private vehicles.
She further explained that if 300 passengers avail of these business coaches every 5 minutes, around 3,000 cars would be taken off the streets during rush hours.
Poe said that they had thought of the possibility of this idea being discriminatory. But then, she said, many people pay for additional services.
"Kunwari sa eroplano, first to board, but you pay a premium (For example, you pay a premium if you want to be the first to board the airplane)," she said.
She added that the extra revenues can be used by the DOTr to provide better services to the people.
DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said that some of the planned railways – the Philippine National Railway from Tutuban to Clark, the PNR South Long Haul, and the Mindanao Railway – will operate on a similar idea. Tugade said that these trains will have ordinary, business, first, and express classes. (READ: 6 new railways to look out for)
But for MRT3, Tugade said they should wait until the rehabilitation is finished before implementing any new ideas. The comprehensive rehabilitation of the MRT3 is set to be completed by July 2021.
After engaging in a verbal spat with Tugade, Poe said during the hearing that she would like nothing more than to see the transport agency succeed, especially in completing their projects. – Rappler.com